John Uglietta, Unit Head

Christine DeMichieli, Office Coordinator

Contact us:
Mackinac Hall B3-105
Allendale, Michigan 49401
Tel (616) 331-2114
Fax (616) 331-2601  

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Welcome to the Philosophy Department

The Department of Philosophy is part of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences  and offers both a Major and a Minor in Philosophy.

The Department counts 21 full-time faculty members working in a variety of specialties.

The Department's international faculty is made of active scholars who are committed to undergraduate education. They are at Grand Valley to share their expertise in a wide variety of philosophical schools, national traditions, historical periods, and specialized areas of philosophical work.

The curriculum is designed to provide a foundation of solid understanding of the history of philosophy, but also to encourage students to pursue work in their own areas of interest. Formal coursework is only one part of the Philosophy student's education. Since inquiry and study are most fruitful when conducted in a vital community of fellow scholars, the Department is committed to offering a number of excellent learning opportunities that go beyond traditional classroom structures.

Professor Mlado Ivanovic Receives Faculty Award

GVSU Visiting Professor, Mlado Ivanovic recently received the Outstanding Faculty Member Award through the Student Life Center. Professor Ivanovic  both Philosophy and the Enviromental Study classes at GVSU for the past three years. While here, he  also spearheaded the GVSU humanitarian student organization, Humanitas.

Ivanovic receives Outstanding Faculty Award

GVSU Philosophy Graduates to Speak Conference

All philosophy students are very welcome! IF you are a senior philosophy major intending to graduate this April or at the end of the fall 2019 semester, please contact Andrew Spear as soon as possible to let him know if you’ll be able to attend.

In recent years it has become a tradition in the Philosophy Department here at GVSU to hold an end of the year event to honor the accomplishments of our graduating senior philosophy majors, to announce the winner of the Dewey J. Hoitenga Philosophy Essay Competition, and to celebrate the end of the academic year and the never-ending life of the mind.

This year we will hold the event, “Celebrating the Examined Life”, on Friday April 19 2019. We are planning to begin a little before 3:00pm on Friday in MAK BLL-110 (the same room where the colloquia usually take place), with the “official” part of the event starting around 3:15 or so. We plan to have some refreshments available and hope you’ll be able to come to spend some time sharing memories, talking to fellow students and faculty, and celebrating your accomplishments and those of your peers.

Attending seniors should also send the following to Andrew Spear:

-       The title of your final essay/project for the philosophy capstone (whether you did it this semester or some other doesn’t matter).

-       A brief description of your other majors or minors, if any.

-       Your most memorable and/or significant experience with philosophy at GVSU.

-       Your plans, short and/or long term, after graduation.

-       If you have a favorite philosophy quote, philosopher or philosophy related joke, I’d love to receive that information as well.

Naturally, it’s up to you how much or how little you want to send,  We will be acknowledging you and sharing a little bit of the information you provide at the event.


Two of our GVSU philosophy graduates, Alexa Nord-Bronzy of Nanyang Technological University,  and Daniel J. Stephens of Duke Kunshan University are presenting in the same panel at the forthcoming American Philosophical Association Pacific Division in Vancouver, Canada, on Saturday, April 20.  Alexa will present on “Guo Xiang on Fasting of the Xin: A Focus on Translation Comparison,” and Daniel on “Value Pluralism and Later Mohist Ethics” in a session organized by the International Society for Chinese Philosophy titled “Reinterpreting Classical Chinese Philosophy.”

Grand Valley State University Ethic's Bowl Competes and Qualifies for National Competition

Ethic's Bowl Student's to Compete at Nationals

GVSU Ethics Bowl to Attends Nationals in Baltimore

The GVSU Ethics Bowl team competed in the National Ethics Bowl this March in Baltimore after competing and taking 2nd place overall in the Upper-Midwest Regional Ethics Bowl in Chicago last November. Jessica Shaltry, Anna Stewart, Richard Vegh, Christian Miller and Mallory Wietrzykowski comprised the team who, in the first of four rounds, defeated Yale University and in the second round came in close behind Youngstown. It was the team's favorite round out of the four because the performances by both teams was so impressive. 

Recently retired GVSU Philosophy professor, Dr. Phyllis Vandenberg, volunteered to assist and accompany students as  stand in coach. 

Congratulations to an excellent showing at the Ethics Bowl National Tourney and a special thank you to Professor Vandenberg and Loeffler who supported the teams efforts. 

To learn more about the Ethics Bowl team, contact Ronald Loeffler via email:

Colloquium Event Calendar

Colloquium Events will begin again in the fall

Page last modified April 18, 2019